Grand Tour of Turkey with ME International Travel

with Istanbul extension
Oct 11-25, 2019 / 15 DAYS

Uncover a land where the cultures of two continents collide.

In Turkey, Ottoman domes float against modern skylines. Classic scenes from Greek epics come to life, and bustling bazaars and vibrant street vendors …

Your package includes

  • 13 nights in handpicked hotels
  • 13 breakfasts
  • 9 three-course dinners, some with beer or wine
  • 9 guided sightseeing tours
  • Expert Tour Director & local guides
  • Private deluxe motor coach
  • 1 ferry transfer
  • 1 on-tour flight

Included highlights

Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Archaeological Site of Troy, Ephesus ruins, Pamukkale’s famous travertines, Mevlana Museum, Göreme Open-Air…

Tour pace

On this guided tour, you'll walk for at least 2.5 hours daily across moderately uneven terrain, including cobblestone streets, dirt paths, and wooden …

Itinerary

Default

Overnight Flight / 1 NIGHT

Oct 11: Overnight flight

Board your overnight flight to Istanbul today.

Istanbul / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 12: Arrival in Istanbul

Included meals: Dinner

Welcome to Turkey! Arrive in Istanbul—one of the world’s only cities that spans two continents—and meet your Tour Director and fellow travelers at a welcome dinner.

Oct 13: Sightseeing tour of Istanbul

Included meals: Breakfast

Set off on a tour of Istanbul’s vibrant streets and historic UNESCO World Heritage sites led by your Tour Director. • Discover the former residence of Ottoman sultans at Topkapi Palace  • Step inside the Hagia Sophia, which held the title of the world’s largest cathedral for nearly 1,000 years • Explore the Blue Mosque, named for the blue tiles adorning its interior • Visit the Hippodrome, once considered the social center of ancient Constantinople

Canakkale / 1 NIGHT

Oct 14: Canakkale via Troy

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Take a short ferry ride across the Dardanelles Strait and embark on a guided tour of Troy, the city at the heart of Homer’s “Iliad.” • Explore the Archaeological Site of Troy with a local guide • See the ruins of the city walls, temples, and buildings • View a replica of the famous Trojan Horse After, continue on to Canakkale and sit down for an included dinner.

Ephesus Region / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 15: Ephesus Region via Pergamon

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Head south along the Aegean coast to Pergamon. • Take a cable car to the top of the Acropolis  • Follow your Tour Director as you explore the ancient ruins • See the Hellenistic theater, Temple of Trajan, and Temple of Athena  Then, travel to the Ephesus region, a historic area on Turkey’s west coast, and sit down for an included dinner.

Oct 16: Sightseeing tour of Ephesus

Included meals: Breakfast

Join your Tour Director on a guided tour of Ephesus, one of the best-preserved ancient Greek cities in the Mediterranean region. • Discover many UNESCO-listed sites, including the elaborate Library of Celsus and the ruins of the Basilica of St. John • View the Great Theatre, which is still in use today • Step inside the house where the Virgin Mary is said to have spent her final days

Pamukkale / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 17: Pamukkale via Sirince

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Head inland and stop in the quaint town of Sirince, known for its wine and olive oil, to get a firsthand look at rural village life.  Later, arrive in Pamukkale and sit down for an included dinner.

Oct 18: Sightseeing tour of Pamukkale & Hierapolis

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Discover some of the area's natural wonders and ancient ruins on today's guided tour. • Visit Pamukkale, a popular spa town during the Roman times • See the town's famous travertines—petrified waterfalls of white stone • Stop in the nearby city of Hierapolis to see the well-preserved ruins  Enjoy a free afternoon in Pamukkale or add an excursion. Sit down for an included dinner this evening.

Default
Aphrodisias
5 hours
Details

Visit Aphrodisias and marvel at the excavated ruins that bear testimony to an age-old artists' colony. In the late first century B.C., the Roman Empire granted autonomy to the city that honored Aphrodite, goddess of love. Aphrodisias' ancient sculptors created works of stunning beauty out of the glowing marble they found in the nearby mountains, and many of these treasures can still be seen today.5 hours and departure time variesSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Antalya / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 19: Transfer to Antalya & sightseeing tour

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Travel to Antalya, where your Tour Director will lead you on a tour of the city.  • Uncover the ruins of Hadrian’s Gate, a remarkably well-preserved triumphal arch • Walk along the city's waterfront • Explore the Antalya Museum, an enormous complex with nearly 30,000 antiquities from the Stone Age, Roman, Hellenistic, and Byzantine periods Sit down for an included dinner this evening.

Oct 20: Free day in Antalya

Included meals: Breakfast

Spend the day exploring Antalya at your leisure or add an excursion.

Default
Aspendos & Perge
4.5 hours
Details

After the Trojan Wars, some of the victorious Greek forces stayed in Asia Minor and established new towns for Greek colonists. This excursion will take you to Perge, one of the most successful of these new colonies, which prospered under the patronage of Alexander the Great. The ancient remains of this proud city are extensive, and you’ll have a chance to explore the Great Theatre, the ruined Hellenistic Gates, Roman baths, and the impressive stadium. Later, visit the Roman theater at Aspendos, a center of classical drama in the first century A.D. Please note: During the summer months, this region can be quite hot. Please bring sunscreen and sturdy footwear.4.5 hours and departure time variesSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Cappadocia / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 21: Cappadocia via Konya

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Cross the Taurus Mountains to visit the mystical center of Konya, the spiritual home of Sufism and the Whirling Dervishes. • Step inside the Mevlana Museum with your Tour Director • Learn more about the Dervishes as you tour the museum, which was once their monastery Continue on to Cappadocia, which is known for its unearthly rock formations, and sit down for an included dinner. Enjoy a free evening in Cappadocia or add an excursion.

Default
Whirling Dervishes
1.75 hours
Details

The Sufi Muslim sect known as the Whirling Dervishes was founded in the 13th century by Mevlana Rumi. They were named after their elaborate dance-like ritual, which honors the movement of the Earth. Learn more about this fascinating ancient faith and its modern-day practitioners during this cultural performance.1.75 hours and departure time variesSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Oct 22: Sightseeing tour of Cappadocia

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Wander through the Göreme Open-Air Museum, which is comprised of frescoed rock churches dating back to the fourth century. • See the area's signature geological rock formations, known as fairy chimneys • Visit a cave village and a rock-carved church • Stop in Avanos to discover the town's distinctive red-clay pottery • Make photo stops throughout the day to soak in the dramatic valleys and otherworldly scenery Sit down for an included dinner this evening.

Istanbul / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 23: Flight to Istanbul

Included meals: Breakfast

Spend a free morning in Cappadocia or add an excursion. Then, fly back to Istanbul this afternoon.

Default
Underground City
3 hours
Details

Discover the mysterious underground city of Kaymaklı. This guided tour will expose the secrets of this ancient city brimming below the surface. The underground city consists of 8 floors, 4 of which are open to visitors. Built to house hundreds of people, the city's tunnels and underground rooms boast innovations including a church, a stable, wineries, kitchens, and a ventilation system, along with living areas.3 hours and departs in the morningSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Oct 24: Free day in Istanbul

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Enjoy a free day in Istanbul or add an excursion. Later, celebrate your trip with your group at a farewell dinner.

Default
Bosphorus Straits Cruise
5 hours
Details

Cruise through the Bosphorus Straits, looking out on decadent Ottoman palaces and imposing medieval castles as you journey through the narrow waterway that separates Europe from Asia. On your way, you’ll stop to visit the famous Egyptian bazaar, known as the Spice Market. After returning from your cruise, sit down to a lunch of Turkish specialties. Please note: This excursion is weather-dependent. In some cases, dinner will be offered instead of lunch.5 hours and departure time varies, lunch includedSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Oct 25: Departure

Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home or extend your stay in Istanbul.

Extension / Starting from $249 pp

Istanbul / 2 NIGHTS

The cultural and economic capital of Turkey, Istanbul straddles Europe and Asia—both figuratively and geographically. Once known as Constantinople, this former capital of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires has long been a bustling and cosmopolitan crossroads. Experience the intersection of East and West at the Byzantine-built Hagia Sofya, the Ottoman-era Blue Mosque, and the exotic Topkapi Palace.

Oct 25: Free day in Istanbul

Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy a full free day in Istanbul or add an excursion.

Default
Hammam Spa Visit
2 hours
Details

Do as the Turks do and pay a visit to a hammam, or Turkish bath house. Going to a hammam has been a mainstay in Turkish culture since the times of the Ottoman empire and visiting one is seen as a time to socialize with friends and relax. Today, you’ll visit a local, public bath house and admire the traditional architecture as you learn more about the roots of this cultural mainstay.2 hours and departs in the morningSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Default
Turkish Cooking Class & Dinner
3 hours
Details

Dive into Turkey’s culinary traditions during this evening’s excursion. You’ll take part in an interactive cooking class alongside a local chef to learn how to craft the types of Turkish foods that are lovingly made and served by local families. Discover the origins of the dishes you’ll be cooking and try your hand at preparing them. At the end of the class, enjoy an included dinner paired with local wine.3 hours and departs in the afternoon, dinner is includedSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Oct 26: Free day in Istanbul

Included meals: Breakfast

Spend a free day in Istanbul or add an excursion.

Default
Kadikoy Market Tour & lunch
5.5 hours
Details

Meet up with a guide and spend the morning exploring Kadikoy Market. This open-air market sits on the Asian side of Istanbul and is where locals go to shop for everything from fresh-caught fish to locally grown produce. Stop by specialty shops to see what the vendors are selling and learn more about the foods used to create some of the country’s culinary staples. You’ll also have a chance to shop for snacks and pick up some sweets to bring back home. Then, head to a nearby restaurant for a lunch featuring food, drinks, and desserts from the Anatolian, or Asia Minor, region of Turkey.5.5 hours and departs in the morning, lunch is includedSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Oct 27: Departure

Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

FAQ

Passport & visa requirements

Tour pace

Transportation & arrival information

Baggage allowance

Clothing & packing tips

Health

Cuisine

Electricity & air conditioning

Connectivity

Time zones

Currency

Tipping

Purchasing excursions on tour

Make selections to see prices
Book now
Share itinerary with a friend
Questions? Contact us •800-438-7672

Explore more upcoming tours

Edinburgh & the Castles of Scotland with ME International Travel

Mar 19-28, 2020 / 10 DAYS
View itinerary & pricing

Provence & The French Riviera Walking Tour with Maine International Travel

Jun 13-22, 2019 / 10 DAYS
View itinerary & pricing

A Week in Ireland: St. Patrick's Day with ME International Travel

Mar 12-19, 2020 / 8 DAYS
View itinerary & pricing

Lake Como, the Italian Riviera & Venice with ME International Travel

May 2-12, 2020 / 11 DAYS
View itinerary & pricing

Tanzania Wildlife Safari with ME International Travel

Oct 12-23, 2020 / 12 DAYS
View itinerary & pricing

Ecuador & Galapagos Islands Cruise with ME International Travel

Jul 6-15, 2020 / 10 DAYS
View itinerary & pricing
* Restrictions Apply:

Prices are per person based on double occupancy, before flights, and vary by departure date. Select your preferred departure date and departure city to view your tour price with flights and hotel transfers included. Changes or cancellation will result in a fee of up to the total tour price. Last-minute specials are not combinable with any other promotional discount. Promotional discounts not combinable with any other promotional offer, including Group Coordinator and Group Benefit programs. Applicable airline baggage fees are not included. Please contact the airline for more information. Some countries may require aircraft insecticide treatment for inbound foreign flights. Such countries can be found at grouptoursite.com/insecticide. To view Go Ahead's complete Terms & Conditions, visit grouptoursite.com/terms. The tour operator for your trip is EF Education First International Ltd. CST 2060043-20.

Terms and conditions
© EF Education First